South Carolina Fossil Fiasco

Senator Peeler: Just stop it. You aren’t helping. You make us all look like morons.

For those that missed it, this adorable little 8 year old girl, Olivia McConnell, wrote a nice letter in her best penmanship to her state legislature suggesting that the mammoth be named the state’s fossil. I assume she is adorable because the story hits a rough patch right away if she isn’t. Anyway, the Senate Majority Leader Harvey Peeler who is apparently a creationist amended the bill that would have made this adorable, lovable, sweet and innocent young woman’s dreams come true to include a sentence from the sixth day of the Genesis 1 account of creation. This caused other senators to immediately react (overreact, perhaps) and try to kill the bill. They seemed to back down on that after learning that sweet Olivia’s very faith in humanity hung in the balance.

On behalf of all Christians everywhere: Senator Peeler, please shut up. You aren’t helping. Indeed, you are the problem.

I am not a creationist but I am a Christian. Read that a couple times if you have to. I don’t need the first several–let’s say 11–chapters of Genesis to be historically accurate to believe that they are awesome, powerful, and reveal truths about God that are life changing. Historical and scientific accuracy is not necessary in order for truth to be spoke. Parables are not stories about actual historical incidences that really occurred but yet somehow they speak powerful truths. Jesus, God incarnate, used parables which–watch this; it is called “logic”–means that God uses parables to reveal Himself to us. We have to use that “logic” I just illustrated to determine when God is speaking to us in parable. It is oh so very tricky.

Senator, I feel your need to protect your faith. I understand that it is scary to live in a world where science (It Just Works!) could speak truth as well. I also understand your desire to piously worship the Creator at moment in life. I do. I live in Colorado where there are these awe-inspiring mountains freaking everywhere. I give thanks and praise to God every time I see them and, if I’m honest, not so much when I am riding my bike up them. But I also know enough geology to appreciate that these have been in the works for a long, long time. And I know enough scientists to know that my witness to them is going to go nowhere if I insist that they ignore their decades of education and careers in order to have a conversation with me about Jesus. The current incarnation of the Rocky Mountains I see every day took millions of years to create. Also, using geological processes, God created them.

Genesis doesn’t say how; it says who and why. I thank God that it isn’t a science text book. I give thanks God that we get to discover, explore, learn, grow, and evolve.

Senator, when you insist on stuffing Bible verses into everything, you make us all look stupid. You make it harder for us to start conversations about our faith with anyone. You are being a poor witness to the faith and putting a stumbling block before the blind.

On behalf of all of us out here trying hard to change the world for the better–to redeem it like Jesus wants us to–please stop it. Resign. Get out of the way. Shut up. Apologize to your constituents and the church for the damage you have done. Plead with Jesus to forgive you for tarnishing His good name. There is forgiveness and grace for those that repent of their sins.

Now is when you are supposed fall to your knees and beg for forgiveness. We’ll wait.

UPDATE:

It would appear that the bill has passed the senate with the goofy genesis sixth day language and now sits on the governors desk waiting for signature or veto. I am stunned. Here is the problem: the bill as it stands is arguable not constitutional because of that bill-o-rights thingy. This means that the governor can sign the bill and then immediately have some atheist group lawyer up and cost the state a mint as they try defending the indefensible or veto the bill and crush the hope, dreams, and innocence of pure little Olivia.

Well played Senator Peeler, well played. You are a truly a tool of evil. Only a real monster would use a child to proselytize, well, I don’t know who you think you are reaching. My theory is that Peeler thinks no one will defeat the bill because “what about the children (Olivia)?” Surely no one will crush her dreams, right? There are words that describe people who sacrifice innocent people as pawns in their personal battles. Rather than sink to the level of name calling, I will just state again that you are a very special brand of evil and the people that voted you into office need to wake up and fix that mistake. Do it now, people.

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